Shares of Dynavax (NAS: DVAX) fell 33% in November, after a Food and Drug Administration advisory committee voted 8-5 against its hepatitis-B vaccine Heplisav. Despite voting 13-1 in favor of the drug's efficacy -- because it outperformed the current standard drug in this space in terms of percentage of adults protected after a period of seven months -- committee members expressed concerns over insufficient safety data. Dynavax has its PDUFA date in late February, and shares would soar upon approval, but investors may be asking too much to think that the FDA will forgo its panel's recommendation regarding safety.

Just because Dynavax's competitors are larger, it doesn't mean they are without risk. For nearly 100 years, Merck's cutting-edge research has led to a number of medical breakthroughs. Today, however, this pharma stalwart is staring down a steep patent cliff and facing generic competition for its top-selling drug. Will Merck crumble under its own weight, or will it continue to pay dividends to investors for another century? To find out if this pharma giant has the stamina to keep its Bunsen burners alight, grab your copy of our brand new premium research report today. Our senior biotech analyst Brian Orelli, Ph.D., walks you through both the opportunities and threats facing Merck, and the report comes with a full 12 months of updates. Claim your copy now by clicking here.


The article Why Dynavax Lost in November originally appeared on Fool.com.

David Williamson has no positions in the stocks mentioned above.  Follow him on Twitter @MotleyDavid Max Macaluso has no positions in the stocks mentioned above. The Motley Fool owns shares of GlaxoSmithKline. Motley Fool newsletter services recommend GlaxoSmithKline. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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